Q. I wanted to report the success of one of your canker sore preventatives. Twenty years ago I started accidentally biting my lower lip, both while eating and in my sleep. Sometimes it happened while I was just thinking of upsetting things. Two days later, I would develop a canker sore that would last at least a week.
Dissolving a zinc tablet on the area helped but was very painful. Frequently I would just let the nature take its course, however slowly.
Then I heard a caller on your radio show tell of green beans as a canker sore preventative. Recently I tried it, eating green beans at my next lunch or dinner after biting myself. Three straight bites have failed to result in a canker sore. Many thanks.
A. Several readers report success curing canker sores with canned green beans. They eat the beans and swish the juice around in their mouths. Others have told us that strained green beans (baby food) do the job as well. Why green beans would work for canker sores mystifies us, but they are clearly safe.
Canker sores (aphthous ulcers) are painful mouth sores that can come and go for no apparent reason. Accidentally biting the cheek, tongue or lip can trigger an outbreak. Besides green beans, readers report that swishing and swallowing sauerkraut juice is effective in speeding canker sore healing. Others are enthusiastic about kiwi fruit for preventing or treating this problem. Some people also report that vitamin B2 helps canker sores heal.